Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

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Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by Jamnman23 » Tue Feb 15, 2011 6:44 pm

Two sites have already played this year's Penn Bowl Trash, so I thought I would open this forum to those who have already played the set and those who do not plan on playing the set at any of the other mirror sites. I thought I would just make one general discussion thread, but if there are requests to have subject specific threads, I can do that as well.

Before discussion begins, I just want to thank everyone that was involved in making this tournament happen. I want to thank Joe Nguyen for sharing the question-writing load with me and for coming up with some interesting and original answer lines. I also would like to thank Eric Mukherjee, Auroni Gupta, and Ike Jose for pooling their heads together to contribute the video games and comics to the set. Additionally, thanks to Mehdi, Sid, and other members of the Penn team who helped with logistics and staffing the day of the tournament. Finally, thanks to the teams that showed up both at the main site at Penn and at Northwestern to play the tournament. A lot of work went into this set, and I hope you guys enjoyed it!

With no further ado, discuss away!
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Re: Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by Cheynem » Tue Feb 15, 2011 6:47 pm

Bonus parts on "It's Your Move"? "My Sister Sam?" YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS, although there's no way these things should be asked about.
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Re: Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by Nine-Tenths Ideas » Tue Feb 15, 2011 7:25 pm

Yeah, so this set skewed towards old stuff a lot. I am appreciative that this helped me power things like Beaver and Mickey Mouse Club, but I think the amount of stuff that came out before I was born was a little excessive.

PS- Isn't there a separate trash forum?
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Re: Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by Fucitol » Tue Feb 15, 2011 7:34 pm

This is under Penn Bowl 2011 discussion when there is a separate penn bowl trash discussion.
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Re: Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by Auroni » Tue Feb 15, 2011 8:52 pm

I'd like to know how the video game questions I wrote (admittedly late) went.

I wrote the tossups on Phoenix Wright and Necromancers, and the bonuses on Tactics Ogre/Black Hole/Final Fantasy, Mario is Missing!/Luigi/Pokey, Duck Hunt/Startropics/Faxanadu, Hawke/Dragon Age/Isabela, Ubisoft/Rayman/Assassin's Creed, Black Ops, Treyarch, Tony Hawk, Trauma Center/Nunchuck/Atlus, Bard's Tale/dog/Baldur's Gate, Sega Soccer Slam/Need for Speed: Underground 2/Robo, Brutal Legend/Eternal Sonata/Guitar Hero: Metallica, Puzzle Fighter/Morrigan/Marvel v Capcom, and Civilization/Alpha Centauri/Pirates!

The difficulty in these was probably quite variable, and I would have modulated it better had I been more diligent.
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Re: Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by Lapego1 » Tue Feb 15, 2011 9:02 pm

Hey, the actual discussion for this is in the Trash forum. I'd prefer to keep this for Penn Bowl related things. If a mod could relocate this discussion over there, that'd be awesome!
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Re: Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by Edward Elric » Tue Feb 15, 2011 9:05 pm

I liked a lot of the music that you had in the set and i felt like there was an equal amount from each decade. I loved the bonuses on the Strokes, Killers and the Community one also. Overall I really had a lot of fun playing this set and judging by the PPB at the Northwestern site and everyones reactions, the set was well recieved.
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Re: Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by Kanga-Rat Murder Society » Tue Feb 15, 2011 9:09 pm

I really enjoyed this tournament a lot. Clues seemed to be well-arranged, the toss-ups seemed to be of appropriate difficulty, and there were a defintely a fair amount of interesting clues. I also reject the earlier stated criticism that this tournament had too many old answer lines. Outside of the first round (where this did feel true, though it may only have felt true due to the television, as those are the only specifics I remember). At the same time, I do have some minor complaints:

- The bonus lead ins were way too long. Sometimes they felt like they were two or three lines, and sometimes I had to wonder whether they were actually the next tossup.

- The bonuses seemed to follow two distict patterns, neither of which was the standard "easy-medium-hard". These two were "easy-medium-medium" and "easy-easy-hard". An example of a "hard" part from the first type was naming recent first round draft pick Ryan Mathews' alma mater. I wish I took notes, as I don't have a specific example for the second type, but I definitely remember them being prevalent. I am not sure that this is a bad thing, as the order of bonus conversion seemed to be very similar to the final standings at our site, but the bonus conversions did all seem to be stacked around 20 PPG, despite the fact that the field featured arguably the two best trash teams in the country and a couple of teams that are probably only a little above average.

- There seemed to be a lot of questions on television shows that I have never heard of. Maybe all of these shows have huge cult followings that I don't know about, but that seemed strange.

- The repeats at the end of Packet 10 were a little frustrating, especially considering that there were no extra tossups in the packet. Additionally, I recall there being two or three other (non word for word) repeats. The only one that I can specifically remember was McEnroe coming up as tossup and as a part of the "I Just Had Sex" bonus. There may have been no actual clue overlap (it was gotten at Fleming), but we discussed the cameo at the time, only to see it come up later.

- The only specific two tossups that I would revise before the other mirrors are the White Album one and the Justine Henin one. The White Album tossup opened with probably the best known lyric from the entire album, and I was lucky enough to win a four way buzzer race on it, despite the fact that I am sure other people knew a lot more about it than me. The Henin tossup essentially went, "She won this doubles major and this one. She defeated Jennifer Capriati at the 2001 Wimbledon." I buzzed with the winner of that tournament (Venus) and was negged. I was certainly wrong there, but I really don't see the harm of adding, "On her way to the finals" to avoid punishing people for making the somewhat reasonable assumption that you would ask for the winner of that tournament. (If that clue was there, I am sorry, but I don't recall it.)

Anyways, when I look at my complaints, I see how minor they are. I think that really speaks volumes to how good this tournament really was. I look forward to playing this tournament in future years and hopefully picking up more interesting nuggets (like the Funkytown being played for Iran clue).

Edit: I forgot to mention the extremely high amount of question on people who had died in the past year. It was to the point where I would consider studying the "Recent Deaths Wiki Page" if I were to play this tournament again. As for Rob's comment below, I did not think that most of the ones I hadn't heard of were that old, but I could be wrong on that. Outside of the television, though, I don't think one could claim this tournament was slanted to the old.
Last edited by Kanga-Rat Murder Society on Wed Feb 16, 2011 10:35 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Tue Feb 15, 2011 9:10 pm

hey everyone, stop posting in here for a bit until I can figure out how to properly move the thread. thanks!

EDIT: Fixed it! Post away.
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Re: Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by Auks Ran Ova » Tue Feb 15, 2011 9:35 pm

BG MSL Champs wrote:I also reject the earlier stated criticism that this tournament had too many old answer lines. Outside of the first round (where this did feel true, though it may only have felt true due to the television, as those are the only specifics I remember).
- There seemed to be a lot of questions on television shows that I have never heard of. Maybe all of these shows have huge cult followings that I don't know about, but that seemed strange.
I am sensing somewhat of a contradiction here! Contrary to your inexplicable rejection, the fact is that there were a lot of tossups on older shows that I can't imagine the majority of people having any appreciably deep knowledge of (CHiPS, Punky Brewster, that sort of thing). This was even more egregious in a number of the TV bonuses, which had hard parts of substantially less note (the things Mike was talking about earlier).
Auroni wrote:a bunch of video game questions
Most of these were pretty good. I thought the Dragon Age bonus was rather hard--are two characters really necessary? We didn't get it, but the Sega Soccer Slam bonus seemed really hard too. I didn't particularly care for either of those tossups--the Phoenix Wright one seemed to run on and on about nonspecific things and "a certain item"-type unhelpful pronoun phrases, then turned into a buzzer race when the first actual name was that of the first client from the first game. Necromancers seemed to be a level removed from the sort of thing I'd like to see asked about in this level of tournament; why not simply ask for a Diablo game, or for the series as a whole?

I'll probably have some more comments later (or not), but I'd like to stress that overall I really enjoyed the tournament. I have no doubt that this was made easier by playing with someone who could gobble up tossups and bonus parts on esoteric 80s television and all those weird name common link tossups (didn't care for those so much myself), but on the whole it was an enjoyable time. The vast majority of questions weren't excessively out-there or poorly written, and it was genuinely fun to play.
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Re: Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by The Schopenhauer Power Hour » Wed Feb 16, 2011 1:09 am

I agree with a couple of the most echoed comments here-- first of all, the set was a lot of fun to play, and the few criticisms I have really did not detract at all from my enjoyment of the set.

Bonuses did seem to be interminable at times, and, as was the case last year, there was far more old TV than my age would allow me to appreciate. Even the current TV seemed to be focused away from the major networks and towards cable, which also raised the difficulty.

One more comment-- my teammates and I noticed that many of the tossups in the set, especially the movies, seemed to focus much more on breadth than depth. That's not to say they weren't well-written in terms of pyramidality, but that the majority of tossups on actors, especially, briefly mentioned their appearances in lots of films instead of focusing on a couple key roles and using easier clues for those roles as the question went on. If this is even an accurate criticism at all, it's just an issue of writing style, but I thought it deserved mention.

I can't think of many questions that were particularly problematic beyond answer selection. Our entire team was sitting on the tossup on "invisibility" for five lines, though I almost hope that question was written that way so we could mention, as Monica did, how "that invisibility tossup sure was transparent!"
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Re: Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by mcgroth » Wed Feb 16, 2011 3:24 pm

I really enjoyed this tournament, so I want to start off by thanking UPenn for putting it on. :grin:

There are many things that I could give praise to, but the result would be a very long and rambling post, so I will just put on my pessimist cap for a few minutes and talking about the few things I wasn't so crazy about.

First, the tournament got off to somewhat of a late start. This did not affect me personally as (1) my team was late, as we spent about twenty minutes going around the UPenn campus looking for an available parking garage and (2) once we arrived, I spent some time on my quest for Einstein Bros. Bagels, which I eventually found. So for me, I was able to arrive late, look for the bagel place, buy my bagel sandwich, and eat it, all before the beginning of the tournament. However, for others, I imagine that the nine o'clock hour was spent a little less adventurously; namely, waiting for the tournament to begin.

As for the tournament itself, again, almost everything was really good. I will echo the sentiments expressed by others about the abundance of '80s television. I was able to pull Simon & Simon out of my ass, but there were several other really hard ones that we missed (I'm looking at you, Crazy Like a Fox), which led me to say that "if Scarecrow and Mrs. King comes up, I'm outta here."

The only tossup answer choice that didn't sit quite right with me was the one on Manolo Blahnik. Maybe it's just the fact that I'm not a shoe connoisseur, but I'd never heard of Manolo Blahnik before Sunday. And yet somebody on the other team answered it before the moderator was done reading, so maybe it's more well-known than I thought.

Anyway, that's all I've got as far as criticisms. Moderators were pretty good, definitely a step up from the moderators at THUNDER back in December. So yeah, thanks again, UPenn, and I'm certainly looking forward to next year's!
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Re: Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by ... and the chaos of Mexican modernity » Thu Feb 17, 2011 12:05 am

To Penn, this set was a whole lot of fun to play, and more likely than not we are gonna come back next year to play it again.


every time i refresh i have a new name wrote:I'd like to know how the video game questions I wrote (admittedly late) went.

I wrote the tossups on Phoenix Wright and Necromancers, and the bonuses on Tactics Ogre/Black Hole/Final Fantasy, Mario is Missing!/Luigi/Pokey, Duck Hunt/Startropics/Faxanadu, Hawke/Dragon Age/Isabela, Ubisoft/Rayman/Assassin's Creed, Black Ops, Treyarch, Tony Hawk, Trauma Center/Nunchuck/Atlus, Bard's Tale/dog/Baldur's Gate, Sega Soccer Slam/Need for Speed: Underground 2/Robo, Brutal Legend/Eternal Sonata/Guitar Hero: Metallica, Puzzle Fighter/Morrigan/Marvel v Capcom, and Civilization/Alpha Centauri/Pirates!
Yeah so it might just be me here, but not including these tossups, the other questions seemed very RPG heavy. It's not really a complaint, but it just seemed kinda biased towards those games, and overall this still was a very good set.
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Re: Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by fizzball » Thu Feb 17, 2011 1:34 pm

1. Not having actually looked at the set, it sure seemed like there was an overabundance of basketball. And as such, an overabundance of "this 6-foot-11 forward" or the like as a clue. This is a space-waster worse than "Born on/in", unless you're writing about Jon Rauch or Eddie Gaedel.


2. There were some repeats, to the point where NU had to raid another pack in our last match. Jenga as a TU came up twice; there was another we weren't told about, and Julio Franco came up twice in bonus parts.

3. Video game questions on arcade games would be nice now and then. Unless there were some and I missed them -- I do tend to zone out pretty early on VG questions, focusing instead on the kids today and how to extricate them from my lawn. Thanks, though, for the TU on Atari 2600 pr0n titles.

4. "It's Your Move" as a bonus part on Jason Bateman isn't too bad. "My Sister Sam" is pushing it though; unless the bonus is on famous stalking cases. A bonus all about Pam Dawber is pretty egregious.

It was a good time all in all. it was cool to see what non-CO trash is looking like these days.
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Re: Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by Cheynem » Thu Feb 17, 2011 2:04 pm

Yeah, the bonus part on "My Sister Sam" didn't even mention the most famous aspect about it, the stalking case, unless I just missed it.
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Re: Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by Jamnman23 » Thu Feb 17, 2011 2:49 pm

fizzball wrote:1. Not having actually looked at the set, it sure seemed like there was an overabundance of basketball. And as such, an overabundance of "this 6-foot-11 forward" or the like as a clue. This is a space-waster worse than "Born on/in", unless you're writing about Jon Rauch or Eddie Gaedel.
At least in all the packets that I wrote, I know for a fact that there was 1/1 Basketball, 1/1 Baseball, and 1/1 Football, and in half of my rounds I had 1/0 or 0/1 college basketball as part of the overall basketball distribution, and on the other half, I had 1/0 or 0/1 college football as part of the overall football distribution. In terms of mentioning height, at least as far as tossups are concerned, the only two I can remember that mentioned height were Manute Bol and Justine Henin. Obviously with Manute Bol, height is extremely notable, and I would argue that it is with Henin as well. Compared with other contemporary female tennis players, Henin is very short, and I believe i worked her height in with some other clue. Perhaps height appeared in some bonuses, and I will try to avoid this in the future, but I don't see this as being as big a deal as height being mentioned in a tossup.
fizzball wrote:2. There were some repeats, to the point where NU had to raid another pack in our last match. Jenga as a TU came up twice; there was another we weren't told about, and Julio Franco came up twice in bonus parts.
I apologize for these repeats. The couple of repeat tossups were just a copying error in assembling packets, and the Julio Franco one was one I just missed.
Cheynem wrote:Yeah, the bonus part on "My Sister Sam" didn't even mention the most famous aspect about it, the stalking case, unless I just missed it.
It did not mention the stalking case, which in retrospect would have turned that answer line from totally egregious to a little less egregious. I am sorry for my poor judgment on some of the 80s TV hard parts of bonuses. These were usually too hard.
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Re: Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by Bartleby » Sun Mar 06, 2011 7:57 pm

I would like to say that I thoroughly enjoyed this set, and thank Penn for writing/editing it. I do have a few points to make about specific questions in this tournament/the tournament in generall:

1) Auroni, I know nothing of video games, but I remember my team-mates (who do know video games) expressing their pleasure at many of those toss-ups and bonus parts, so I think that they were probably very good.

2) Repeats- McEnroe was one. Another I have not seen mentioned here is that in one round (I think round 8), there was a toss-up on Jessica Alba, whose give-away mentioned that she played The Invisible Woman in "The Fantastic Four", and then the very next round had a bonus part on "The Invisible Woman". Also, not strictly a repeat, but Billy Ray and Miley Cyrus came up back-to-back in rounds 2 and 3. I don't think that's terrible, but they could have been spaced out more.

3) My team-mates thought one of the bonuses in round 10 (about the re-incarnation of Chronos or something?) was incorrect, but I'd have to see the set to be more specific.

4) So there was one question in this tournament I had a major problem with, and it was the toss-up in round 10 on "Quiz Show". So the first line of this tossup goes something like "In one scene in this film, a family plays a game where lines from Shakespeare are recited and their corresponding plays have to be named..." Yes, this is true of "Quiz Show", but it's also true of recent Best Picture winner "The King's Speech". I negged this question, and even the other eight people in the room, including the reader were surprised that I was wrong. It's not a bad clue, but when there's a movie that is on everyone's mind right now that features the exact same sort of scene, I really don't think this is the first line you should have in a question. I'd be willing to be that a lot of people negged this one, and questions that specifically draw people into negging are not the greatest thing.

5) I don't think that I've ever played a tournament that had so many clues that talked about obscure and old television movies. If it didn't come out in the last ten years, the odds are probably that no one has seen it, so it really provides little help (other than abstract contextual clues based on the year of release) to people playing. This is just my opinion.

6) As has been mentioned, the old television stuff, which I didn't think was too bad, but it definitely got quite tough at some points.

7) One other slight harangue about first-line parts of questions. I really don't think that these should be things that you can find on wikipedia. I didn't notice this too often, but it came up a couple of times, specifically Round 2 on Jon Hamm, which mentions that he taught Elie Kemper drama in high school. If you're like me, and a compulsive wikipedia reader (and I imagine a lot of people who play quiz bowl read wikipedia frequently), then this question was done before it started. I think wikipedia can be a viable source, particularly for trash, but maybe like not stuff in the first line of the question.

8) Also, the recent deaths thing.

Sorry if that got a bit rambling and/or long. I'd like to reiterate that I really enjoyed this set, specifically the sports (you made my day with the Minnie Minoso bonus) and film. I would definitely play PBT again if the opportunity arose.
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Re: Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by joenguyen90 » Thu Mar 10, 2011 9:03 pm

Repeats- McEnroe was one. Another I have not seen mentioned here is that in one round (I think round 8), there was a toss-up on Jessica Alba, whose give-away mentioned that she played The Invisible Woman in "The Fantastic Four", and then the very next round had a bonus part on "The Invisible Woman". Also, not strictly a repeat, but Billy Ray and Miley Cyrus came up back-to-back in rounds 2 and 3. I don't think that's terrible, but they could have been spaced out more.
- John McEnroe: Ben and I talked about the McEnroe repeat during editing. I reasoned that since there was no overlapping information between the McEnroe toss-up and the "I Just Had Sex" bonus ("This person makes a cameo in the video as he illustrates that sex can make a nice man out of the meanest") and that a person that has seen "I Just Had Sex" wouldn't be deterred from answering "John McEnroe" even if it was the answer to a previous toss-up. Ben wanted me to change it, but I made the convincing argument of "Nah, just leave it." I won.
- Jessica Alba: I must have missed this one. The comics questions came relatively late and forgot to read them to check for overlap. My bad.
- Billy Ray and Miley Cyrus: not a true repeat and probably one too many references to Miley Cyrus in a trash tournament, but sure, we could have spaced these better.
4) So there was one question in this tournament I had a major problem with, and it was the toss-up in round 10 on "Quiz Show". So the first line of this tossup goes something like "In one scene in this film, a family plays a game where lines from Shakespeare are recited and their corresponding plays have to be named..." Yes, this is true of "Quiz Show", but it's also true of recent Best Picture winner "The King's Speech". I negged this question, and even the other eight people in the room, including the reader were surprised that I was wrong. It's not a bad clue, but when there's a movie that is on everyone's mind right now that features the exact same sort of scene, I really don't think this is the first line you should have in a question. I'd be willing to be that a lot of people negged this one, and questions that specifically draw people into negging are not the greatest thing.
As you can infer, I have not seen "The King's Speech". In fact, I wrote the "Quiz Show" question a while ago, perhaps even before "The King's Speech" was even released. If I had seen it and realized that the Shakespeare clue was not uniquely identifying to "Quiz Show", I would have changed it. Unfortunately, that didn't happen, and it would be conceivably quite difficult to do this for every movie question. It's inevitable that something like this to occur.
5) I don't think that I've ever played a tournament that had so many clues that talked about obscure and old television movies. If it didn't come out in the last ten years, the odds are probably that no one has seen it, so it really provides little help (other than abstract contextual clues based on the year of release) to people playing. This is just my opinion.

6) As has been mentioned, the old television stuff, which I didn't think was too bad, but it definitely got quite tough at some points.
We tried to get a time distribution for all of the subjects of half pre-1995 and half post-1995. The TV questions may have skewed more to pre-1995 and mentioned material that is too difficult to ask about, but we'll try to fix this for later incarnations of Penn Bowl Trash.
7) One other slight harangue about first-line parts of questions. I really don't think that these should be things that you can find on wikipedia. I didn't notice this too often, but it came up a couple of times, specifically Round 2 on Jon Hamm, which mentions that he taught Elie Kemper drama in high school. If you're like me, and a compulsive wikipedia reader (and I imagine a lot of people who play quiz bowl read wikipedia frequently), then this question was done before it started. I think wikipedia can be a viable source, particularly for trash, but maybe like not stuff in the first line of the question.
It is difficult to find clues about a given subject for Trash that's not mentioned on its Wikipedia page. We try to do the best we can to find good clues from other sources, but we often need to use the evil service that is Wikipedia. If you can read a lot of Wiki articles and remember that Jon Hamm was one of Ellie Kemper's eighth grade teachers or that Calvin Johnson built solar latrines in South America, I think you deserve the power.
8) Also, the recent deaths thing
There were a handful of questions about people who recently died (Manute Bol, Leslie Nielsen,...), and we'll try not to make this a habit if people don't like to hear these questions.
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Re: Penn Bowl Trash III General Discussion

Post by Bartleby » Thu Mar 10, 2011 9:32 pm

joenguyen90 wrote:
4) So there was one question in this tournament I had a major problem with, and it was the toss-up in round 10 on "Quiz Show". So the first line of this tossup goes something like "In one scene in this film, a family plays a game where lines from Shakespeare are recited and their corresponding plays have to be named..." Yes, this is true of "Quiz Show", but it's also true of recent Best Picture winner "The King's Speech". I negged this question, and even the other eight people in the room, including the reader were surprised that I was wrong. It's not a bad clue, but when there's a movie that is on everyone's mind right now that features the exact same sort of scene, I really don't think this is the first line you should have in a question. I'd be willing to be that a lot of people negged this one, and questions that specifically draw people into negging are not the greatest thing.
As you can infer, I have not seen "The King's Speech". In fact, I wrote the "Quiz Show" question a while ago, perhaps even before "The King's Speech" was even released. If I had seen it and realized that the Shakespeare clue was not uniquely identifying to "Quiz Show", I would have changed it. Unfortunately, that didn't happen, and it would be conceivably quite difficult to do this for every movie question. It's inevitable that something like this to occur.
My point in mentioning this was not that all clues about movies which could relate to >1 movie need to be avoided, but rather that a clue with that degree of specificity, which clearly applies to a film that is currently quite prominent (though if you've not seen it, you obviously would not know this) should be avoided. So no, in this case I don't think that it's inevitable, but that's simply my opinion. For instance... a tossup on "Raiders of the Lost Ark" could mention that John Rhys Davies played a key supporting role, but this is true of many movies, not the least of which the three LOTR films. Let me put it this way: if you're batting 1/199 (we played ten rounds and there was a foul-up by the reader in one of them), you are doing a damn good job.

ETA: Also, my point with the TV movies was not that old stuff is bad (it's not), but that I find TV movies a fairly not helpful thing to include as a clue.
Brian McNamara
Western University '13
University of Waterloo '14
Temple University '20

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